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...to steal and steal again is my greatest carnal pleasure
and I stake my life on it.
A sexy prison from which there is no escape...
...so if you want to gaze at me
first cease everything you are doing
and let your heart be the only thing to stir.
Lupin III: The Woman Called Fujiko Mine is a 2012 anime series based on Monkey Punch's Lupin III franchise. Produced by TMS Entertainment and Po10tial, it began airing on NTV on April 4, 2012 as part of a celebration to the 40th anniversary of the completion of the first Lupin III manga. The series focuses on the franchise's heroine, Fujiko Mine, as she undergoes various missions and encounters other characters in the Lupin universe. The opening theme is "New Wuthering Heights" by Naruyoshi Kikuchi and Pepe Tormento Azcarar feat. Ichiko Hashimoto, whilst the ending theme is "Duty Friend" by NIKIIE. In addition, music direction is being handled by legendary anime director Shinichiro Watanabe.
Sayo Yamamoto is the director of the series, making it the first Lupin title to be directed by a female. Unlike the previous anime adaptations of Lupin III, The Woman Called Fujiko Mine is much closer to Monkey Punch's original creation in art style, tone, and in the portrayal of Arsène Lupin III. It is darker, more serious and sexually oriented, and is the first series in which Lupin is not the main protagonist.
Funimation Entertainment is simulcasting the series, with English subtitles, on their website and Nico Nico. Episode recaps are located on the main Lupin recap page.
This series contains examples of:
- Badass: Everyone, most noticeably Zenigata who is a lot less goofy than usual, although he still has his moments. He wouldn't be Zenigata if he didn't.
- Becoming the Mask: Part of Da Renzo and Aiyan's Xanatos Gambit is having one of the stage hands, Nora, take over for Aiyan after finding out how talented she was.
- Big Bad: As of episode 8, Count Luis Yew Armeid is shaping up to be this.
- Big Damn Heroes: Goemon singlehandedly prevented the assassination of the leader and his grandson heir of a small European country and took out the two missiles that were supposed to start World War III via the Cold War.
- Bishounen: Oscar.
- Butterfly of Death and Rebirth: Along with the owls, butterflies keep appearing during certain scenes, serving as added symbolism to the Fräulein Eule mystery.
- Calling Card: Lupin leaves one on Fujiko's thigh in the first episode.
- The Cavalry: Zenigata and his troops at the end of the first episode.
- Chekhov's Gun: At least one per episode
- Episode 1: The Dizzy-Dizzy
- Episode 3: The Duke's belt.
- Episode 4: The bees.
- Episode 5: The mummy.
- Chickification/Useless Protagonist: While she can still kick ass, Fujiko can be seen as overly passive and uninteresting at times. One only hopes she gets some actual Character Development to remedy this.
- Cold War: The setting of at least Episode 7, which features expys of Fidel Castro, JFK and Nikita Khrushchev. Though with the series so full of anachronisms and playing with time in general it's hard to tell if the whole series is set within the Cold War.
- Combat Stilettos. Not only Fujiko, but Oscar as well.
- Compressed Adaptation: It's not an adaptation, but you could call this a mix of old and new Lupin III media. The sketchy art style, crude humour and nudity brings the manga by Monkey Punch to mind. However, it's a lot less nonsensical than the manga, and the stories are more like the anime series and movies (which a lot of fans are more familiar with).
- Dark and Troubled Past: Fujiko, who was apparently held prisoner and experimented upon by a man named Count Luis Yu Almeida as a child.
- Darker and Edgier: Played straight and quite literally in the animation.
- Decoy Protagonist: Lupin isn't the main character.
- Dirty Old Man: The cult leader from episode 1.
- Disney Acid Sequence: In episode 4, when Fujiko steps into the River of Oblivion. Again in episode 6.
- Driven to Suicide: Cicciolina.
- Fujiko had a gun to her head and pulled the trigger. Fortunately, it was just a squirt gun.
- Dude Looks Like a Lady: Oscar.
- Effeminate Misogynistic Guy: Oscar, who hates Fujiko with a passion.
- Even the Girls Want Her: A pretty major plot point in episode 6.
- Everything's Worse with Bees: The bees on the rooftop of the opera house in Episode 4? Definitely.
- Fan Service
- Femme Fatale: Fujiko, as usual.
- Flashback Nightmare: Fujiko has what appears to be one in episode 6 after being knocked out by Oscar.
- Gag Penis: According to Fujiko, Jigen has one:
No worries. He isn't a Magnum down there at all.
- Hot Teacher: Fujiko in episode 6.
- Hotter and Sexier: Compared to the other anime series; the OP alone can be considered this.
- How We Got Here: The series as a whole shows how Fujiko met Lupin, Jigen, and Goemon.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Da Renzo and Aiyan in Episode 4. Also counts as a May-December Romance.
- Hypercompetent Sidekick / Reckless Sidekick: When he appears in an episode, Oscar is the one who makes the detailed battle plans and goes into the trenches to take out Fujiko Mine. Inspector Zenigata is portrayed as the laid-back type who doesn't focus on Fujiko and even goes so far as to have sex with her. This ultimately unravels Oscar's plans in Episode 6, in which he's a little too gung-ho in his sexual encounter with Fujiko and the taunting afterwards. He's not nearly as level-headed as the inspector, leading him to charge into situations he hasn't fully comprehended.
- Immodest Orgasm: Fujiko in episode 4. Thankfully it was faked.
- Kill It with Fire: In an extremely dark moment for Lupin, he tries to kill Jigen with traps of fire while in the pyramid in Episode 5.
- Madness Mantra: Fujiko at the end of Episode 9. "What the hell? What the hell? What the hell?"
- Master of Disguise
- Mind Screw: Episode 10 rivals Mystery of Mamo and Green vs. Red in terms of the bizarre.
- Motifs: The series is rife with symbolism, though the three that symbolize Fujiko the most are the owl, the flower, and the butterfly.
- Mugged for Disguise: Done by Fujiko to one of the guards in episode 1.
- Mushroom Samba: In episode 10.
- Only Six Faces: All of the women, including Fujiko, look almost exactly alike with the exception of hairstyles and eye color. Lampshaded in Episode 4.
- Only You Can Kill Me: Cicciolina to Jigen
- Out-of-Character Moment: Zenigata not only shooting Lupin, but having sex with Fujiko in episode 4.
- Owl Be Damned: Owls are a reoccurring motif in the series, often blink-and-you'll-miss-it-moments in the background, and humanoid owls appear in Fujiko's Flashback Nightmare. The OP features a few as well.
- Prequel: The show explains how the main characters met each other from Fujiko's point of view. It's not the only prequel story though.
- Real Song Theme Tune: The OP, New Wuthering Heights. Doubles as Crowning Music of Awesome.
- Scars Are Forever: Aiyan burns herself so that she could leave her stage life and be with Da Renzo.
- Scenery Porn
- Shout-Out: Episode 4 is a big one to The Phantom of the Opera. Episode 6 mentions The Da Vinci Code.
- Single-Target Sexuality: Oscar, who's "gay as a springtime", as people has put it, but only for Zenigata.
- Temple of Doom: The pyramid in episode 5, complete with several Death Traps.
- Title Drop:
- The OP does this for the anime's opening theme New Wuthering Heights:
Like Heathcliff in "Wuthering Heights", to steal and steal again is my greatest carnal pleasure, and I stake my life on it.
- Lupin finally does it in Episode 5, albeit a variation of it:
The woman named Fujiko Mine is a peacock wherever she goes.
- Yandere: Does not even begin to describe Oscar's issues.
- You Don't Look Like You: Fans who have only watched Lupin may be taken aback by the extremely angular build of most of the characters. However, those who have read the oldest Monkey Punch manga know that the design in this anime is similar to their very first manga designs.